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The Boston Globe

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First Person

Nantucket Lightship /LV-112 will open for tours

Bob Mannino has become the caretaker for this 1936 “floating lighthouse” that will dock in East Boston.

Basically, a lightship is a floating lighthouse. The reason they started using them was because it just wasn’t practical to build a lighthouse [in some locations]. Nantucket Lightship Station was called THE STATUE OF LIBERTY OF THE SEA. When a lot of immigrants came in, this was the first US landmark they saw.

I’ve always been involved with the water and sailing. My passion, MY INTEREST IS MARITIME HISTORY. Back in August 2008, my wife brought in the paper. There was a photo of the Nantucket Lightship and a story saying that it was for sale and IN DANGER OF BEING SCRAPPED. The thing that is ironic is that this is the most historic and famous lightship in the United States, and yet it was orphaned. We said, “It’d be a shame to let something happen to this ship.”

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